11/27/2015SAUDI ARABIA Riyadh plans mass execution of 55 people in one day These include those convicted of crimes related to terrorism and internal revolt. The executions are "imminent". In 2015 151 people executed, the highest number since 1995. Activists: the government uses the death sentences to solve the problem of internal dissidence. Riyadh (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Human rights activists and organizations are sounding the alarm following the news that Saudi Arabia is planning a mass execution of dozens of people in a single day .
According to the newspaper Okaz, quoted by the BBC, at least 55 people will be executed for "crimes of terrorism"; also the website of the newspaper al-Riyadh published an...
11/27/2015ISRAEL - EGYPT Coptic Patriarch Tawadros in Jerusalem for the first time in 35 years by Joshua Lapide The head of the Coptic Church is in the holy city for the funeral of Archbishop Anba Abraham, who died two days ago. In 1980, Shenouda III forbade the Orthodox Copts from traveling to Jerusalem until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was resolved. Welcomed at Notre Dame, owned by the Holy See. The Coptic Orthodox Church is the largest Christian community in the Middle East.
11/26/2015ISRAEL – PALESTINE With Gaza like a huge prison, Caritas Jerusalem is raising funds for Christmas gifts for Christians The Catholic charity wants to raise US$ 50,000 to buy gifts for the Strip’s 350 Christian families who live in what the Caritas general director describes as a desperate situation, from which many want to escape. He does not want money or aid; instead, he calls on Western Christians to come “in pilgrimage” to the Holy Land, to show their tangible “closeness and solidarity”.
11/26/2015VATICAN - KENYA Pope in Kenya: never violence in God's name, call to mission and to create a just society On his second day in Africa, Francis meets religious leaders and celebrates Mass. "The health of any society depends on the health of families." "Support for families in their mission within society, to welcome children as a blessing to our world and to defend the dignity of every man and every woman, because we are all brothers and sisters in the human family." "Interfaith understanding, friendship and cooperation in defending the dignity conferred by God on individuals and peoples".
11/25/2015VATICAN - KENYA Pope in Kenya: fear, mistrust and despair feed violence and terrorism Speaking to the country’s political, economic and cultural leaders, Francis spoke of building democracy and protecting creation. “We have a responsibility to pass on the beauty of nature in its integrity to future generations,” and “invest in them” as well as “show genuine concern for the needs of the poor”.
11/25/2015SYRIA Islamic State frees 10 Assyrian Christian from Hassaké community They belong to a group of over 200 faithful abducted last February in the northeast of Syria. Five women among the released hostages. Their release came after "lengthy negotiations" conducted by the Eastern Assyrian Church. An estimated 140 people still in the hands of the militia.
11/24/2015TURKEY - RUSSIA For Moscow, Turkey’s downing of Russian plane "is a serious incident" Turkey claims Russian plane violated its airspace. Russia denies it left Syrian airspace. A Kremlin spokesman says he has no idea if Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s visit to Turkey, tomorrow, will be cancelled. At the same time, it would be wrong to “make any conclusions” from the incident.
11/24/2015TURKEY "Together for the common home", Focolari meet with Patriarch Bartholomew The meeting starts tomorrow in Halki, the monastery that one was the seat of the Greek Orthodox Theological School. The patriarch and Maria Voce will present the main reports, but bishops from various Churches are expected to address the gathering as well, including Card Kurt Koch, who is in Istanbul as the head of the Holy See delegation to the Patriarchate for the feast day of Saint Andrew.
11/23/2015VATICAN – AFRICA In messages to Kenya, Uganda and Central Africa, pope says he is coming as a “messenger of peace" Ahead of his trip, Francis sends video messages to the three countries where he will travel between 25 to 30 November. In his message to the Central African Republic he notes that on the 29th, he will open Bangui Cathedral’s Holy Door “a bit ahead of the Holy Year of Mercy, which "will be for everyone, I hope, a providential time for authentic forgiveness, for giving and receiving, and for the renewal of love."
11/22/2015VATICAN Pope: The logic of the Gospel is expressed in humility and selflessness For the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, the pope said, "The worldly logic rests on ambition and competition, and fights with the weapons of fear, blackmail and the manipulation of minds." Francis entrusts "the many Christians who are, unfortunately, still persecuted today" to the intercession of the new blessed proclaimed in Spain. He calls for a Hail Mary for his trip to Africa.
11/20/2015LEBANON – SYRIA When held by the Islamic State, Fr Mourad had compassion for his captors by Fady Noun The Syrian Catholic priest speaks about his months of captivity in the hands of Jihadi militias. On several occasions, his abductors staged his mock execution. On one occasion, he was even flogged. Moving away from his initial fear, he experienced the grace of forgiveness and mercy. Praying and trust in Our Lady were crucial. His thoughts also go to Father Paolo Dall'Oglio.